An Introduction To Xballerina

As a professional ballerina for 14 years, I strove endlessly toward artistic and physical perfection. Now nearing retirement at the ripe old age of early thirty something, I work to re-invent myself. And what better place to do so than in my new home, the great city of New York? In the spirit of this bustling landscape, my pursuits have taken diverse forms. Inspiration and invaluable information strike from every direction. Tools to share with the artist and athlete who lies within any human…inspiration for the art of being human. And perfection has nothing to do with it:

“Give up defining yourself – to yourself or to others. You won’t die. You will come to life. And don’t be concerned with how others define you. When they define you, they are limiting themselves, so it’s their problem. Whenever you interact with people, don’t be there primarily as a function or a role, but as the field of conscious Presence. You can only lose something that you have, but you cannot lose something that you are.” Eckhart Tolle in A New Earth; Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose.

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8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. flowergirlkit
    Jul 20, 2014 @ 17:58:18

    Hi there! I am so pleased to have stumbled upon your blog, I’m an adult ballet beginner so I love reading ballet blogs. That’s crazy how ballet professionals retire at around the same age that I took up this sport, art form, hobby, whichever one applies. I just wanted to say that I love A New Earth:Awakening to your Life’s Purpose

    Reply

    • xballerina
      Jun 05, 2016 @ 19:48:35

      Hi! Sorry for the bleated response. I’ve just returned to WordPress after a long absence (see my recent post for more). Are you still dancing? Just wanted to say congrats on finding ballet! It’s never too late to dance, and it is always an art form. No matter when you start or how often you take class. It’s just too demanding on the body to do it 40 hours a week (which is a professional work load) at a certain point in life. Anyway, cheers and let me know how you’re doing!

      Reply

      • kit
        Jun 07, 2016 @ 01:55:04

        Hello! No worries about the belated response, welcome back to WordPress.
        Still dancing, now almost 3 and a half years into it, and I started Pilates a year and a half ago to cross-train. Wow, 40 hours per week is a lot of dancing! I can see how that can be too demanding on the body. I love taking class so much that sometimes I have to remember to pace myself (meaning: just because I can fit two classes that day into my schedule doesn’t mean I should take both, especially if I already did that the day before…), but I just want to keep dancing!

      • xballerina
        Jun 16, 2016 @ 22:00:40

        Hey, good for you! And pilates is the best cross training for ballet (and life)! Have you tried a barre class? Those are great too, not dance but strengthens the same muscle groups and pretty intense. Yes, I feel you, ballet is addicting! Always good to pace yourself to avoid injury, but easier said than done. Let me know if you have any questions on cross training for specific ballet technique goals. I will try to make a post about it:)

      • kit
        Jun 18, 2016 @ 00:22:03

        Hmm, I haven’t tried a barre class, but I may look into it, or at least do a video one with my home barre in the spirit of cross training. Something I discovered before starting pilates was that even though my ballet-specific muscles were getting stronger, my large muscles (especially my quads) were not up to par – found out first hand the importance of cross training.
        Since you asked, do you have any advice on how to get a deeper grand plie (in all positions)? I’m sure that it’s a sign of weakness in my legs, but even though I’ve gotten much stronger my grand plies remain awfully shallow and I’d like to improve on that. Thanks in advance!

      • xballerina
        Sep 28, 2016 @ 03:35:29

        Hey Kit, Do you feel like the limitation in grande plié is due to lack of muscle strength only or do you experience tightness as well? A simple way to improve quadricep strength for grande plié is to practice parallel chair pose with your back against a wall (feet hip distance apart, walk the feet out as much as needed to sit down about half way, leaning against the wall). Hold for as long as possible, working up to 2 minutes. Also, in ballet class, make sure you’re not forcing your turn out too much. Make sure the rotation is coming from your hips and only turn out to where you could hold it on a very slippery floor. Knees should track directly over the second toe and tail bone should be shooting down directly between the heels with the back tall. Imagine: the wall is behind you, your sliding down it, the down is only a preparation for coming up. Use the breathe: inhale to lower and slow exhale to press up. Let me know if any of that helps. Cheers!!

      • kit
        Sep 28, 2016 @ 03:57:25

        Though I occasionally feel tight (mostly when I’ve been overdoing it), I think it’s a strength-related issue, and yes, mostly the quads . Thanks for the chair pose exercise, I’ll be sure to start doing it. Thanks for all the tips as well, they are really helpful, especially the reminder about the tailbone. While I’ve gotten much better about it, that’s one that I still catch myself on sometimes.

      • xballerina
        Sep 28, 2016 @ 10:49:00

        Super, good luck!!

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